Resources for general practitioners

GPs participating in the ANSC program are provided with a suite of resources developed in conjunction with the Sydney Local Health District (SLHD) maternity facilities in an effort to provide consistent care for GP shared care patients.

ANSC GP Resource Manual


The ANSC GP Resource Manual is intended as a guide for general practitioners participating in the SLHD Antenatal Shared Care Program. The manual content is closely linked with HealthPathways where clinically relevant.

PDF document  pdf ANSC GP Resource Manual v 7.4 (4.00 MB)  (June 2017)

ANSC GP protocol: schedule of visits

GPs participating in the ANSC program will be expected to adhere to the agreed guidelines as outlined in the SLHD ANSC Protocol when caring for their antenatal shared care patients.

PDF document pdf SLHD Antenatal Shared Care Protocol - Antenatal Clinic  (704 KB)
PDF document pdf SLHD Antenatal Shared Care Protocol - Birth Centre  (122 KB)

Breaches of the ANSC Protocol that affect patient outcomes will be recorded for quality assurance purposes. Any investigations requested by the GP for a woman under his/her care must be followed up by the GP concerned. At all times it is the primary responsibility of the provider ordering the test or noting an abnormal finding to ensure appropriate follow-up management and communication, irrespective of whether a copy has been sent to the participating hospital. 

Breastfeeding and infant feeding guidelines

PDF document  pdf SLHD Breastfeeding Policy Compliance Procedure 2017 (3.01 MB)  : Comprehensive breastfeeding guidelines and information
external link Search for a Certified Lactation Consultant: Lactation Consultants Association of Australia and New Zealand (LCANZ)

Patient information and resources

external link SLHD Early Childhood Services
Child and Family Health: all referrals/enquiries to local Early Childhood Centres is via the Central Intake Line (Phone: 9562 5400)

external link Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA)

Infant Feeding Guidelines

external link NHMRC Infant Feeding Guidelines - comprehensive guidelines for health workers recommending breastfeeding and infant feeding

Early Pregnancy Assessment Service (EPAS) - RPAH


The aim of EPAS is to identify and manage ectopic pregnancies, vaginal bleeding in pregnancy, or miscarriage less than 20 weeks gestation. The service is available to assist you with the management of your haemodynamically stable patient.

If patient is clinical unstable and less than 20 weeks pregancy, arrange immediate transfer to relevant hospital Emergency Department  

Urgent review for pregnant patients < 20 weeks gestation, contact relevant hospital on-call Gynaecology Registrar
Contact relevant hospital on-call O&G Registrar for all pregnant patients > 20 weeks gestation.These women should be sent to hospital Delivery Ward 

Referral criteria

Patient must:

  • be less than 20 weeks pregnant,and
  • have abdominal pain or vaginal bleeding,and
  • be experiencing only mild to moderate symptoms,


  • have an incomplete miscarriage or threatened miscarriage, confirmed by ultrasound

Women attending Canterbury Hospital who fulfill referral criteria (and willing to travel) may be referred to EPAS at RPAH or St George Hospital 

Exclusion criteria

  • Patient more than 20 weeks pregnant – ph. Obstetric Registrar (02) 9515‑6111 for management  in the Delivery Ward.
  • Termination of pregnancy
  • Dating scans
  • Management of hyperemesis

Referral advice 

For advice or guidance regarding patient referral, please contact Clinical Midwifery Consultant (CMC) Mon - Sun  08.00am-4.00pm  Ph: 0429 728 608  Fax 9515 3454 (Health Professionals ONLY). There is no need to contact CMC for all EPAS referrals, only if further referral advice is required.

 For all other non early pregnancy/gynaecological issues, please contact hospital O&G Registrar ph. 9515 6111.

Required information

  • Pathology copy of blood group result
  • Most recent serum quantitative BHCG where available
  • Any previous ultrasound results
  • Significant medical history
  • RPAH Fetal Medicine ultrasound referral form
  • Complete EPAS Referral Form and give to patient to take to clinic  

Inform the patient 

  • Must present to the Women’s Ambulatory Care Reception (Level 5) at 7.30 am (Mon- Fri) the next business day. 
    There are no appointment times and waiting times will vary.
  • Preparation requirements – a full bladder is not required and fasting from midnight is preferable.
  • If the patient consents, a report will be mailed to the general practitioner on the day of consultation.
    PDF document Patient Brochure -  pdf RPA  (283 KB) pdf Early bleeding in pregnancy (283 KB)
Fetal movements

All pregnant women should be routinely provided with verbal and written information regarding normal fetal movements during the antenatal period. Clinicans should emphasis the importance of maternal awareness of fetal movements at each clinical visit. Regular enquiry about fetal movements is an important aspect of ascertaining fetal wellbeing.

Women with a concern about decreased fetal movements (DFM) should be advised to contact their health provider immediately. Maternal concern of DFM overrides any definition of DFM based on numbers of fetal movements. 

PDF document Maternity - Decreased fetal movements in the third trimester: Guideline Summary - Ministry of Health NSW
external link PSANZ Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Alliance - Resources for both health professionals and women
external link Stillbirth- Centre of Research Excellence - Decreased fetal movement resources including clinical guidelines, e- learning module, consumer  video
PDF document Patient Brochure - Pregnancy : Your baby's movements and what they mean  (Available in different languages)

Healthy lifestyle during pregnancy (smoking cessation, alcohol intake, healthy eating)

Healthy eating during pregnancy

external link NSW Health "Get Healthy in pregnancy" - free telephone counselling service,information and resources regarding physical activity, healthy eating and weight gain in pregnancy 
external link NSW Health " Get Healthy" Service " - a range of resources developed to assist GPs and AHPs to promote the "Get Healthy" service to their patients
external link NSW Health " Get Healthy General Practice Referral Form" + additional referral information. The General Practice Referal Form template is already supplied in both Medical Director and Best Practice ( For BP, tick ALL STATES box) 

PDF document Patient Brochure - Healthy eating when you're pregnant or breastfeeding - Department of Health
PDF document Patient Brochure - Food safety during pregnancy - NSW Food Authority

Pregnancy and alcohol

external link Women want to know: Discussing pregnancy and alcohol - Department of Health. Assessment tools and information to assist health professionals in discussing alcohol use and pregnancy

Smoking Cessation Clinics

Drug Health Services offer one-to-one counselling support clinics for individuals wishing to stop smoking. Clinics are located at RPA ph. 9515 7611 (Wed 1.00-4.00pm, Thurs 1.00-4.00pm)  and Croydon Community Health Centre ph. 9378 1306 (Mon 9.00-2.30pm)

Management of Obesity

external link RANZCOG College Statement: Management of obesity in pregnancy
external link NSW Health "Get Healthy in pregnancy" - free telephone counselling service, information and resources regarding physical activity, healthy eating and weight gain during pregnancy

Oral Health

PDF document Patient Brochure- Oral health during pregnancy 

Hyperglycaemia in pregnancy (including gestational diabetes)

PDF document  pdf Diagnostic Testing for Hyperglycaemia in pregnancy (504 KB)  - resource which includes defining risk, screening protocol, interpreting results, postnatal follow-up and pre-pregnancy assessment
PDF document  pdf Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT) Instructions (149 KB)  - patient instruction for GTT testing
external link ADIPS - Australian Diabetes In Pregnancy Society- Resources for both health professionals and patients

Labour and birth

Overdue pregnancies

Following the 40 week GP visit, advise patients to contact the clinic for their post dates appointment.

RPA - Women need to be seen at 41 weeks +1 day in the Registrars' "Post Dates" clinic. Should this date fall on a weekend the women must be seen in the previous Thursday afternoon.

Canterbury Hospital - Women need to be seen at 40+ weeks 

Should women go into labour there is no need to call and cancel the clinic appointment.

Along with routine assessment an internal (P.V.) examination will be attended. A management plan for induction of labour will be determined based on the finding and fully discussed with the woman. Instructions, information and a planned date for their hospital admission will be given.

PDF document Patient Brochure -RPA: Your breech baby 
PDF document Patient Brochure - RPA: Women having an External Cephalic Version (ECV) 
PDF document Patient Brochure -Vaginal Birth After Caesarean (VBAC) Labour Care 
PDF document Patient Brochure - Previous Caesarean 
PDF document Patient Brochure  pdf SLHD Pelvic Pain in pregnancy (259 KB)  

Perinatal mental health

Early identification of women experiencing psychosocial problems and mental health conditions in the perinatal period it important so they can recieve timely support and care. 

external link  pdf Mental Health Care in the Perinatal Period - Australian Clinical Practice Guideline (681 KB)  - Centre of Perinatal Excellence (COPE)
external link COPE Centre for Perinatal excellence - provides resources for both health professionals and consumers
external link Screening and assessment tools : Psychosocial risk assessment (ANRQ/PNRQ) & Assessment of depression and anxiety (EPDS)
external link beyondblue - provides access to a variety of information regarding perinatal mental health
external link Edinburgh Postnatal Depression scale (EPDS) questionniare
external linkTranslated Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) 
PDF document  pdf Looking after your perinatal mental health (611 KB)  - Information for patients


Preconception planning

Pre-pregnancy counselling is an important and integral part of any woman’s health care if she is planning a pregnancy. It is recognised that situations may require specialist advice including an obstetrician, geneticist or paediatrician.

PDF document  pdf RPA Pregnancy Planning Clinic (560 KB)  - multidiscipline service providing comprehensive assessment of preconception health for women and/or couples planning a pregnancy
PDF document Preconception checklist - areas for discussion and referrals (if required) prior to pregnancy

Prenatal screening

All women, regardless of age should be counselled and offered the option for screening for chromosomal anomalies.

Antenatal Shared Care GPs can refer women directly to the Fetal Medicine Unit (Phone: 9515 6042 or Fax: 9515 6579) for the following tests:

  • Combined First Trimester Screening (cFTS)
  • Non-Invasive Prenatal Screening (NIPT)
  • Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS)
  • Aminocentesis

Relevant referral forms are required to be completed for referral for these tests.

Timing of procedures 
Procedure Gestation (wks) 
Non- Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT)  10 weeks onwards
Combined First Trimester Screening (cFTS)  11+1-13+6 
Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS)  11-13
Amniocentesis 15-19

The Fetal Medicine Unit (FMU) at RPA Women and Babies routinely offers Combined First Trimester Screening (cFTS): ultrasound scan (nuchal translucency and nasal bone) plus biochemistry to pregnant women booking for delivery at RPA Women and Babies and Canterbury Hospitals 

Referral for cFTS: 

Access to Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) will be as a second line screening tool for women at high or intermediate level of risk after cFTS. The NIPT test is not available through Medicare and women will have to fund this test themselves. For further information contact the RPA Genetic Counsellors ph 9515 5080 or Fetal Medicine Unit ph 9515 6042


 PDF document Patient Brochure- Screening tests for your baby in early pregnancyNSW Health:  Centre for Genetics Education 
 PDF document Patient Brochure- Prenatal testing booklet - NSW Health : Centre for Genetics Education
external link First Trimester Sceening Learning Module: NSW Centre For Genetics: On-line education module 
external linkSearch for Certified Operators to perform Nuchal Translucency - RANZCOG Nuchal Translucency: Ultrasound, education and monitoring program

Translated material regarding genetics, prenatal testing and pregnancy are located at the Multicultural Health Communication Service - NSW Health.

Thyroid disease

PDF document pdf Thyroid Disease Guidelines and referral flowchart (390 KB) : Who to screen, Thyroid Function Test Reference ranges in pregnancy, Referral criteria

Translated information

Translated material regarding pregnancy related issues can be located at NSW Health: Multicultural Health Communication Sevice. Information available include maternity care options, planning a pregnancy, caring for a baby at home and depression during pregnancy and early parenthood.

Vaccinations and pregnancy

Prevaccination Infomation


Vaccination remains the best protection pregnant women and their newborn babies have against influenza. 

Despite influenza vaccination being available free to pregnant women on the National Immunisation Program, vaccination rates remain low with only 1 in 3 pregnant women receiving the influenza vaccine.  Influenza infection during pregnancy can lead to premature delivery and even death in newborns and very young babies. Pregnant women can have the vaccine at any time during pregnancy and they benefit from it all through the year. 

Administration of the influenza vaccination should be at the GP visit and documented on the antenatal "yellow card" next to "Investigations" or circle Y/N if card is stamped with "Flu Vax". The influenza vaccination is available free to pregnant women.

Three educational videos are available:  

For health professionals:

For pregnant women:

For further information visit: 
external link Immunise Australia Pregnant Women ​
external link NSW Health Seasonal Influenza Vaccination 2018
external link RANZCOG College Statement: Influenza vaccination during pregnancy
external link Influenza Vaccination in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Mothersafe factsheets - Patient information


Pertussis vaccination during pregnancy is the best way to protect newborns from day one with studies showing that it is more than 90 per cent effective in preventing whooping cough in infants. Antenatal pertussis vaccination is offered free to all pregnant women and is recommended to be administered in the third trimester (preferably at 28 weeks).

PDF document  pdf Antenatal Pertussis Vaccination: GP & AMS Information (46 KB)
PDF document  pdf Antenatal Pertussis Vaccination: Evidence Review (573 KB)
PDF document  pdf Antenatal Pertussis Vaccination: Consumer Factsheet (503 KB)
PDF document  pdf Antenatal Pertussis Vaccination: Consumer Information (A5 pad) (757 KB)
external link Immunisation Handbook: Pertussis update
external link Protect newborns from whooping cough - NSW Health



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